All along, I used to think that the Mahabharata is a much more interesting story than the Ramayana because it is so much more a developed plot.
More drama, more action. The villans have a streak of good, the good guys some bad qualities. Like the danaveera Karna,
Like Dharmaraj Yudhishtira who can gamble away his wife ..
God himself is so much more flamboyant as Krishna than as Rama.
Varied relationships to different people. The darling baby of Yashoda .. Eternal sweetheart to Radha and the Gopika's .. Different even to his wives .. obedient and almost docile to Satyabhama .. the Lord of her heart to Rukmini ..
The best friend of Arjuna ... Philosopher and Guide to the Pandava's ....
a special friend to Draupadi.
So much variety, so much romance ..
Rama on the other hand (except for a couple of days when Kaikaie lost her composure) pretty much ruled the show. Obedient brothers, obedient wife, sages who respect him and shower boons and divine weapons ...
God he must have been bored !
And bored I certainly was.
Too much of Sattva is not good for us ordinary mortals I thought! Untill today when I saw the episode of Sabari once more.
Sabari's story is like fresh pure honey. A single taste - Sweetness.... Like a pitcher of pure milk, a single colour - White. A single emotion - Love.
Simple pure and intense.
How else can a story of half eaten fruit being offered to the Lord become immortal. Perhaps this is what He was referring to when he said
"patram pushpam phalam toyam yo me bhaktyA prayacchati / tad-aham bhakty-upahRtam aSnAmi prayatAtmanaH "
And then he teaches the "Ninefold path to devotion" to Sabari as follows:
1. Fellowship with saints
2. Fondness for legends of the Lord
3. Selfless service to the Guru's lotus feet
4. Hymns to the Lord's virtues with a guileless heart
5. Chanting the lords name with steadfast faith
6. Practice self-governanace and detachment
7. See the world as one with the lord and rever Saints higher than the Lord
8. Contentment with what one has and not find fault with others even in a dream
9. Simplicity and honesty in everything. Have faith in the lord with neither exultation nor depression